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Waste Not

The latest in the growing number of efforts directed at reducing, repurposing and ultimately eliminating waste in all its forms.

UK Households Waste $11 Billion Worth of Food Each Year

UK households waste £6.9 billion ($11 billion) worth of food and drink, or 7 percent of overall sales, each year, according to new research from WRAP.The organization estimates that the grocery retail supply chain produces roughly 6.5 million tons (Mt) of annual waste. Of this, 3.9 Mt is derived from food and drink manufacturers, with the majority being food.

Closing Loop on Waste Helping German Brewery Become Net Zero by 2018

Just in time for Oktoberfest, the Hofmühl Brewery in Eichstätt, Bavaria has announced that a combination of solar and bioenergy is not only supplementing its energy supply, but making it completely self-sufficient, according to 2degrees.

Boeing, Oracle Team USA Partner to Recycle Composites in America's Cup-Class Yacht

Boeing and Oracle Team USA are collaborating to recycle 7,000 pounds of carbon fiber from USA-71, a yacht built for the America's Cup campaign in 2003. The hull and mast of the racing yacht will be processed and repurposed — a first-of-its-kind effort for what could be the largest carbon structure ever recycled.Boeing and Oracle Team USA say they are working with research partners to utilize a technique developed to recycle composite materials from Boeing's 787 Dreamliner, which is 50 percent composite by weight and 20 percent more fuel-efficient than similarly sized aircraft.

New Bioplastic Could Eliminate 50 Million Tons of Annual E-Waste

Italian biotech firm Bio-on has developed a bioplastic called PHA (Polyhydroxyalkanoate), made from agricultural processing waste materials, which is 100 percent biodegradable in water and soil and can be used as a substrate for electric circuits. When combined with suitable nanofillers, the polymer can act as an electricity conductor, with the potential of replacing plastics in most electronics.The company says the use of PHAs can help put a dent in the 50 million tons of waste produced worldwide every year from discarded smartphones, tablets, computers and other electronics.

Rogers Family Launches 97% Biodegradable Single-Serve Coffee Product

Rogers Family Company says it has developed a single-serve coffee product that is 97 percent biodegradable.The coffee company claims an estimated 9.1 billion single-serve coffee and drink cartridges – some 19 million cubic feet of waste – end up in U.S. landfills each year. According to the National Coffee Association, more than a tenth of U.S. households (12 percent) own single-cup coffee brewers, and that number is on the rise.Rogers Family Company says it created the OneCup BIO to address this longstanding waste challenge and meet the demands of increasingly environmentally conscious consumers.

University of Bath Researchers Treating Wastewater with Seafood Shells

The thousands of tons of waste seashells created by the edible seafood sector are being used to treat wastewater in a new project undertaken by researchers at the University of Bath in the UK.Dr Darrell Patterson, from the University’s Department of Chemical Engineering, used waste mussel shells to create what he says is a cheaper and more environmentally friendly way of ‘polishing’ wastewater, which could remove unwanted substances such as hormones, pharmaceuticals or fertilizers.

Sims Recycling Solutions Launches ‘Zombie Phone’ Buyback Business

Just in time for Halloween, Sims Recycling Solutions, a global electronics reuse and recycling company, today announced the launch of Zombie Phone, an online service that allows individuals to sell their used cell phones directly to Sims. Based in Australia, Sims Recycling Solutions operates 16 North American sites in Arizona, British Columbia, California, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Nevada, New Jersey, Ontario, Quebec, Tennessee and Texas.To begin the buyback process, visitors to the Zombie Phone website select their current wireless carrier and identify the make, model and condition of their phones. Based on this information, an offer is instantly calculated.

Former Trader Joe's Exec Wants to Turn Slightly-Past-Its-Prime Food Into New Retailing Concept

Food waste is a huge problem in America and globally, with up to 40 percent of perfectly good food being trashed in the US, according to a study by Harvard and the Natural Resources Defense Council. Yet there's a lack of nutritious food in US inner cities and elsewhere.So the ex-president of Trader Joe's is trying to put supply and demand together to create a new form of food retailing. Doug Rauch plans to open a new market, the Daily Table, in Dorchester, Mass., early next year to sell "repurposed" food as is, in lightly processed form — like a fast-food restaurant.

Rubies in the Rubble: Fighting a Culture of Waste One Chutney at a Time

In 2010, Jenny Dawson was a couple of years out of university working at a hedge fund company in London. One day, she found herself at a wholesale market where she saw pallets of edible fruit and vegetables going to the waste bin. The food had been grown in neighboring countries in Europe and as far away as Kenya.To Dawson it was sheer madness and an environmental and social travesty that so much good food requiring great resources to grow and transport to London would ultimately end up in the garbage. “Seeing pallets of perfectly good fruit coming in from Kenya destined for the garbage evoked a reaction in me. There must be something we could do. We can’t be this wasteful,” says Dawson.

Investors Ask General Mills to Step Up Packaging Responsibility

This week, investors are asking General Mills to take responsibility for recycling its post-consumer packaging waste.

Intel Plants in Arizona Recycle 60% of Water Used

Intel treats at least two million gallons of industrial water a day at its plants in Chandler, Ariz., then returns the water to an underground aquifer, according to Bloomberg.The company, which is the city’s largest employer, recycles 60 percent of its water. It also is expanding the treatment facilities and increasing the amount it reuses while it constructs a $5 billion plant that will make more efficient computer chips.Bloomberg says Intel’s Chandler plants use nine million gallons of water a day, of which five million is reused or reclaimed.

Two-Thirds of Scholastic Books Now Sourced From FSC-Certified Paper

Scholastic, Inc., leading publisher of books for children and young adults, announced on Monday that it now purchases 68.2 percent of its paper from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified sources, surpassing its original goal of increasing the amount of FSC-certified paper purchased for its publications to 30 percent by 2012.The global children's publishing, education and media company says that after making significant gains toward the FSC goal between 2008 and 2011, it increased its goal for 2012 from 30 percent to 35 percent of all paper purchased to be FSC-certified. Scholastic also pledged to by the same date increase its use of recycled paper to 25 percent, of which 75 percent would be post-consumer waste.

SBIO Winner Fenugreen Poised to Change the World - Could Your Startup Do the Same?

It’s been only a few months since Fenugreen won the Innovation Open at the Sustainable Brands ’13 conference, but you wouldn’t know it based on their momentum and accomplishments since. Since winning SBIO, the company’s brilliantly simple product, FreshPaper, has been featured on NBC’s Today Show, Bloomberg, CNN, Dr. Oz and on Oprah’s Wow List.

Project Recover Exploring Viability, Options for Eliminating Paint Waste

Global design and innovation firm Seymourpowell today announced a collaboration with leading global paint company AkzoNobel Decorative Paints to explore and improve the process of recycling used paint — thus closing the loop of paint production.As part of a project jointly funded by the UK’s innovation agency, the Technology Strategy Board, Seymourpowell has made an educational video highlighting the possibilities and benefits of paint recycling, and has also identified a completely new technology to help scale and speed up the paint-recycling process for greater business viability.

Dirtball's 'Green Jean' Needs Your Help to Tackle Plastic Bottle Waste

66 billion bottles of water are consumed (and ultimately tossed) each year in the United States alone. In order to make a dent in this staggering number, eco-friendly clothing company Dirtball is using Kickstarter to launch a new product, The Green Jean.

Apple Now Offering In-Store iPhone Recycling

Apple is now making it easier for customers to recycle their old iPhones and get new ones with its new in-store iPhone Reuse and Recycling Program according to a recent announcement. The program, which began in stores across the U.S. on August 30, allows iPhone users — with a valid iPhone contract — to trade in their used phone (as long as it is in working condition) for store credit, which can be used towards the purchase of a new one.

Nike’s New Shanghai Store Is 100% Rubbish

Sportswear giant Nike’s new concept store in Shanghai has been constructed using waste materials including more than 5,000 drinks cans and 50,000 old CDs and DVDs.Built by Miniwiz Sustainable Development, an architectural firm based in Taiwan, the building has been designed to be 100% adjustable using a suspension ceiling system to adapt to different retail setups during the course of a year.All of the building’s materials were ‘urban mined’ and recycled from consumer lifestyle rubbish. And no glue has been used, meaning that all materials can be 100% re-recycled separately, too.

Sprint Breaks Guinness World Record for Most Cell Phones Recycled in One Week

Sprint has long been the industry leader in cell phone recycling. Now the wireless carrier has a Guinness World Records® achievement to prove it.This week Guinness World Records recognized Sprint for shattering the record for the number of cellular phones recycled in one week: 103,582 cellular phones, more than double the previous record.“We are committed to keeping old cell phones out of landfills and are so pleased that our customers supported us during this record-setting week, as they regularly do throughout the year,” said Jaime Jones, senior vice president of consumer sales at Sprint.

MillerCoors Decreases Water Use By 6%

MillerCoors reduced water use by 6.1 percent to a record low 3.82 barrels needed per barrel of beer in 2012, according to the 2013 MillerCoors Sustainability Report, released yesterday.By comparison, the nation’s second-largest brewer says some U.S. breweries use as much as 6.62 barrels of water to produce a single barrel of beer.

GM Donation Insulates 400 More Coats for the Homeless

General Motors has made an additional donation of scrap sound-absorption material from its Chevy Malibu and Buick Verano models to a Detroit nonprofit for use as insulation in waterproof, self-heating coats that become sleeping bags for the homeless.